Online Advocacy Continues Gaining Momentum with 17 Percent Increase in 2011

Greater Than 29 Percent Growth Rate Experienced by Animal Welfare, Environment & Wildlife, and Jewish Vertical Sectors

Americans want their voices heard when it comes to issues about which they are passionate. Online advocacy actions grew at a solid 17 percent clip from 2010 to 2011, according to The Convio Online Marketing Nonprofit Benchmark Index™ Study. The fastest growing sectors, each at more than 29 percent, are: Animal Welfare, Environment & Wildlife and Jewish. Advocacy actions are instances of sending some form of written communication to political leaders.

In addition to an increase in online advocacy, advocates are also quickly becoming financial supporters of the organizations they support, growing at a 24.6 percent rate – nearly four times the increase from 2010. The full Benchmark study can be found at www.convio.com/2012benchmark.

“The digital realm is changing the way nonprofits engage supporters to advocate around important issues,” said Vinay Bhagat, founder and chief strategy officer for Convio. “In the past, written letters and signed petitions were the norm. Not anymore. Social media and digital technologies allow concerned citizens to quickly add their voice to a cause or concern, and encourage friends and family to do the same via peer-to-peer engagement. Digital advocacy is a game changer in the political process and will certainly have an impact on this year’s Presidential election.”

Online advocacy has increased significantly in the last few years. In 2008, the Environment & Wildlife sector had the highest percentage of advocates in their email files at 11.72 percent. Today, Environment & Wildlife is at 24.65 percent. Other verticals are trending accordingly.

Key Advocacy Findings of the Study Include:

  • Online legislative advocate counts grew by 17 percent: Overall, 75 percent of the verticals experienced more than 10 percent growth in their number of advocates.
  • Animal Welfare, Environment & Wildlife, and Jewish grew the most: The verticals that experienced the greatest growth were Animal Welfare (30.12 percent), Environment & Wildlife (29.23 percent), and Jewish (29.21 percent).
  • Donor advocates increased by 24.63 percent. This is nearly a fourfold increase from 2010 when the median change was 6.42 percent.

This year’s study analyzes data compiled from more than 700 nonprofit organizations in the U.S. and Canada that have at least 24 months of online usage data, and who collectively raised more than $1.22 billion online in 2011. The study aggregates results into benchmarks that nonprofit organizations can compare against their peer group and the industry as a whole. In addition, the study provides separate benchmarks for 19 nonprofit industry sub-groups, or verticals.

About Convio
Convio is a leading provider of on-demand constituent engagement solutions that enable nonprofit organizations to maximize the value of every relationship. With Convio constituent engagement solutions, nonprofits can more effectively raise funds, advocate for change and cultivate relationships with donors, activists, volunteers, event participants, alumni and other constituents. Convio offers two open, cloud-based constituent engagement solutions: Convio Common Ground® for small- and mid-sized nonprofits and Convio Luminate™ for enterprise nonprofits. Headquartered in Austin, Texas with offices across the United States and United Kingdom, Convio serves more than 1,600 nonprofit organizations globally. Convio is listed on the NASDAQ Global Market under the symbol CNVO.

Forward-looking Statements
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For more information: www.convio.com

Press Contact:
Karoline McLaughlin
Director, Corporate Communications
Convio, Inc.

Online Advocacy Continues Gaining Momentum with 17 Percent Increase in 2011 | Convio